While many clients will have a good idea of what they want to wear and some great prop ideas, other clients prefer suggestions. When styling your portrait session, here are a few simple tips I hope you will find helpful.
Gone are the days of all white or all black in portraits. Go bold with color. Earthtones, pastels, or bold bright colors will all work. Families don't all have to wear the same color or be matchy matchy anymore. Instead, choose complimentary colors. A great place to start a search for complementary colors is Pinterest. Another resource which is one of my favorite sites for complimentary color inspiration is Design Seeds. Sometimes it may help to consider which room your photos will be placed. The color palette for that room could be an inspirationyour wardrobe colors. Or if your photos will be on Christmas cards, then consider wearing outfits that relate to the holiday season.
Break up bold patterns and plaids with solid color jackets, sweaters, cardigans, vests, scarves, etc. Even better choose different textures (ruffles, lace, knit, leather) when layering these items. Go for a funky look by adding a hat, headband, or sunglasses. Simple jewelry and if desired, a light coat of makeup can also really enhance your photos.
Props are not required. But if you choose to use them, there are so many prop options depending on whether your shoot is for graduation, a newborn, engagement etc. Stuffed animals, ultrasounds, sports, dance, or ROTC uniform, roller skates, flowers, suitcase, football or other sports equipment, class ring, favorite blanket, book or toy, instrument, a family heirloom, etc. It's all about personalizing your session with items that uniquely represent you, your interests, and your lifestyle.
Neon colors. Glittery makeup. Clothing with logos and words unless the type of photoshoot deems them necessary. Baggy clothing and excessively tight clothing should also be avoided.
A smile is the most important item to wear. Happiness shows in your portraits. If you are unhappy, then it will most definitely show. If you're camera shy, practice smiling and posing in front the camera before your session. Face a window with light or go into your bathroom with your camera and take as many selfies until you you like what you see. It can really help take the edge off during your session.
OTHER ITEMS TO CONSIDER
Prepare your outfits from head to toe before your session and try them on to ensure you are happy with the look. Ensure nails are manicured as some shots will show your hands. If you wear glasses, consider shots with and without glasses if you don't have anti reflective lenses. If you plan to tan, do so a few days before your shoot as sunburns cannot be retouched. Remember to press outfits especially graduation gowns because wrinkles will show up. Bring styling tools to freshen up between shots if needed (especially if you choose a two hour shoot). If you have concerns about acne, or if you look better on a certain angle, or have any other concerns, mention these as early as possible 'before' your session so we can determine how to address them.
I hope these tips are helpful. If you have questions about what to wear, email me firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll be happy to help!